In February of 2009, my husband and I bought our first home located on a few acres in Johnson, Vermont. We live here with our dog, Ollie, two cats: Elvis and Atticus, six Nigerian Dwarf goats: May, Chutney, Poppy, Juniper, Willow, and Jokers Wild, and about fifteen laying hens. And to top it all off we welcomed our daughter, Isabel, into the world on January 11th, 2011.

We're slowly updating our 1850's farmhouse while steadily working towards a healthy, meaningful, self-sufficient life together.

This blog details our endeavors along with our successes and failures- all in good fun. Thanks for stopping by, hope to see you again soon!


May and I enjoying some sunshine


A Waiting Game

Lovingly Posted by Melissa Friday, April 9, 2010

Hey all!

I have been getting increasingly 'itchy' about the garden.  I'm ready to plant something in the ground.  I've been holding back on creating the raised beds until the ground dries up a bit more, but I think this week I'll tackle it.  In a couple weeks I'm going to sow our pea seeds.  Our tomato plants that we started inside a while back are doing so great and they smell soooooo good.  They've got nice, thick stems and great big leaves, and lots of them.  They spent their first day outside on Saturday, not much of a change from their window seat as it was easily in the upper 80's, but the little breeze was something new.

I spent some time on Saturday transplanting more of the tomato seedlings that I had started a couple weeks ago.  I also moved the pepper seedlings that we had transplanted along with the first batch of tomatos into bigger, 6" pots so they'll have room to spread out someday.  The pepper seedlings that just started coming up I left in the trays until they get their first set of real leaves.  I keep telling myself that 'peppers just take longer', but I have to admit that its a bit frustrating to see the tomatos, that were started on the same day, so much larger and further along than the peppers.  But, on the other hand, they're alot larger that they ever became last year so that is really encouraging.

After everyone was situated in their new pots and watered and sitting in some warm sunshine on our front porch, I started the next batch of seeds; celery and two more varieties of tomato (Amish Paste and Brandywine).  We've only got two small trays and one larger tray for seed starting so there isn't much, but a little bit of everything.  Hopefully this way we will stagger all the harvest dates so we'll be in veggies all summer! 

I get a little impatient, though, when it comes to seed starting; mostly because I want to start everything (and I DID last year, which didn't work out at all) but there's no point in starting most seeds because they do fine in slightly cooler soil to germinate.  I just want to see our garden in full swing...and now.  But spring is a waiting game, and anyone in my family can tell you that I get a little competitive.

So, I'll sit, and wait, and stare at our little seedlings and the cells where seeds have yet to sprout.  I'll monitor the garden, get the beds ready, and wish I wasn't too cheap to buy black plastic covers to heat the soil faster.  Tonight, though, I will plan the garden.  I'm getting my seed packets and notes on good companions/bad companions together and I'm going to draw up the plan for the year.  I haven't been this excited to garden in....well I'm not sure I've ever been this excited to garden.  Its the start of a new chapter in our homesteading life, a little hard work and we could save ourselves some serious cash at the grocery store each month that we don't have to buy vegetables.  Not to mention the fact that we'll know for sure our dinner doesn't contain any 'frankenfoods' or scary chemicals.  Oh yes, I am excited.


  1. EcoLife Says:
  2. I've had the same problem with my peppers. I figure it's due to the cold, since peppers LOVE the heat. I decided to put a small space heater in the room with them and see if that helps jump start them. My tomatoes like you are gang busters, but that's because I too am following The Vegetable Gardeners bible.

    I can't wait this year's garden is going to be Epic!!

  3. Melissa Says:
  4. Yeah, I'm thinking of putting a heating pad underneath the peppers to help heat up the soil...we'll see.

    Don't you just LOVE the VGB? Best gardening book ever.

    Heck yeah its going to be epic!! Woo hoo! :)